The second Issue of A Life of Theology: The Coram Deo Journal of Theology is now available as a PDF and the update to the free iBook (on the iBookstore for iPad) is currently under review and should be available later this week. This Issue’s theme is The Resurrection, and the introduction to the issue is provided below.
“Our task in the present is to live as resurrection people in between Easter and the final day, with our Christian life, corporate and individual, in both worship and mission, as a sign of the first resurrection and a foretaste of the second.”
N.T. Wright, Surprised by Hope
Following the crucifixion of Jesus—a Roman form of execution taken as a sign by most people that his messianic movement had failed—his followers were faced with a dilemma. On the one hand, they believed that God was indeed going to act in and through Jesus to bring about His kingdom on earth. They had seen the miracles, they did not turn away from the difficult teaching, and they were told that this new movement would not fail (Matt 16:18). On the other hand, they had been promised abundant and eternal life by the very man whose death they had just witnessed. As they huddled together for a long Saturday there was room for many emotions: doubt, fear, anger; but there was no room for hope. A crucified messiah, after all, is a failed messiah.
But then early the next morning, some of the women among them began their journey down to Jesus’ tomb in order to adorn the grave-site with a collection of spices. To their surprise, the tomb was empty.
Once the disciples recovered from the shock, spent forty days with the risen Jesus, and were given the Holy Spirit, things began to change. The cowardly disciples who on Friday were ready to deny their association with Jesus were now boldly facing imprisonment and death for proclaiming his Resurrection. The great ethnic divide between Jew and Gentile was dissolved. The news of Jesus’ resurrection was spreading—and communities based on this news were growing—across the Roman empire and beyond. Within the first few centuries of the Christian church, there were enough Christians in the Roman empire to warrant Constantine’s issuing of the famous Edict of Milan.
Throughout its history, the Christian church has celebrated the season of Easter to remind the community of the significance of the Resurrection of Jesus. Not just one day; not just one service—but an entire season. The resurrection certainly deserves this special treatment. This issue is our attempt to scratch the surface of reflecting on the reality, beauty, and significance of the resurrection in our lives during this Easter season.
History, Apologetics, Greek Faculty